Venice Beach has gone viral again amid its upsurge in homelessness.
A TikTok video widely shared on social media Tuesday shows Los Angeles Police Department officers with assault rifles detaining a group of homeless people after responding to reports of a man with a gun at Venice Beach.
The clip shows at least two police officers pointing long guns at an encampment where a group of homeless people are kneeling. Some have their hands up.
The video gained traction when it appeared on the Reddit r / ABoringDystopia page, but has since been removed and flagged as’ inaccurate / misleading ‘for the title’ Cops bring assault rifles to evict homeless people of Venice Beach ”.
Turns out the cops weren’t there to kick anyone out. Police told TMZ that the incident was filmed on July 25 after officers were called in about a man wielding a gun and threatening someone. They eventually found a BB gun, but no shooters or casualties.
No arrests were made and none of the people in the video were removed from the camp.
TikTok video shows LAPD officers with assault rifles appearing to arrest a group of homeless people in Venice Beach
The video was flagged as misleading on social media for captions claiming cops forcibly evicting homeless people
Officers were responding to calls about a man brandishing a gun and threatening someone. They eventually found a BB gun, but no shooters or casualties
However, the clip has been shared with the same misinterpreted caption multiple times on Twitter, Instagram and YouTube, including by former professional basketball player Rex Chapman and New York rapper Awkword. Many expressed outrage at the armed evictions, with some calling it police brutality and others saying it looked like the extermination of the homeless.
The misinterpretation of the video only adds to the hysteria over the rise in homelessness and crime in Venice Beach, and the controversial debate over how to address it.
Venice Beach’s homeless settlements have become a virtual tent city with violent crime and rampant drug use pushing tourists and families out. City workers began tearing down homeless camps along Venice Beach ahead of the July 4 weekend of this year.
During another round of tent cleaning on July 16, police learned that a woman was being held against her will in a beach tunnel in the 13700 block of Way, KCBS-TV reported.
LAPD agents found skeletal remains near Venice Beach and identified them as belonging to Kolby Story, 32, missing since December
During an investigation, LAPD agents found the skeletal remains of Kolby Story, 32, who has been missing since December.
A spokesperson for the LAPD confirmed to DailyMail.com that a “Good Samaritan” found personal effects belonging to Story and turned them over to the police. According to KCBS-TV, the cops recovered his checkbook and driver’s license.
Cops said detectives, along with members of the California Emergency Management Bureau, then conducted a search for Story in the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve and Ballona Creek, and found the remains.
The cause and circumstances of his death are still unknown.
The cause and circumstances of Story’s death are still unknown.
The discovery only strengthened efforts to tackle homelessness and crime in Venice Beach. Camping was banned in the region from July 30; around this time, a dead homeless man was found in his tent on the promenade, according to Fox News. Another homeless person has been arrested in connection with the murder.
That same week, Venice Beach went viral for another violent incident involving its homeless population. Mobile phone video captured a Venice Beach homeless man with his face painted screaming as he attacked a rival with a stick in a three-way brawl with passers-by.
The previous week, a naked homeless man was seen in a video holding his penis while smoking a cigarette at 9 a.m. as groups of children walked nearby, witnesses told DailyMail.com.
That week, Venice Beach went viral for another violent incident involving its homeless population. Cellphone video captured the moment a Venice Beach homeless man with his face painted screamed as he attacked a rival with a stick in a three-way brawl
The two shirtless men in the photo appeared to be allies in the fight
Over the past decade, Los Angeles County has seen the number of homeless people double from around 40,000 to around 80,000, according to the Los Angeles County Homeless Count.
According to the Greater LA Homeless Count, 66,433 homeless people lived on the streets of LA County in 2020, an increase of 12.7% from the previous year.
Fox News reported that Venice Beach saw a 132% increase in assaults in which a homeless person was a suspect in 2021 and a 126% increase in cases in which a homeless person was victimized by the end of May.
Meanwhile, thefts in which a homeless person was the victim increased by 1,100%, while thefts in which a homeless person was a suspect increased by 160%. Arrests for crimes have increased 81% so far this year, the outlet reported.
Homeless settlements have turned into a virtual tent city with violent crime and rampant drug use, pushing back tourists and families
There were 66,433 homeless people living on the streets of LA County in 2020, a 12.7% increase from the previous year
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on July 29 aapproved an ordinance that criminalizes homelessness in most parts of the city, eliciting intense backlash both for and against.
The ordinance prohibits sitting, lying, sleeping or setting up camps within 500 feet of “sensitive use” properties, which include schools, parks, libraries, overpasses, underpasses, highway ramps, tunnels, bridges, footbridges, subways, washings, sprawl and active railways.
The ordinance also criminalizes sitting, lying, sleeping or setting up camps within 1,000 feet of or on a “street, sidewalk or other public right-of-way.”
The mayor signed the law following a 13-2 vote by Los Angeles City Council and it will come into effect 30 days from July 29.
Those who break the law will receive a citation from the City’s Administrative Citations Enforcement Program.
However, people who refuse to comply or prevent a city employee from enforcing the law will face a misdemeanor charge, up to six months in jail in the County Jail. LA and / or a fine of up to $ 1,000, as set out in Section 11 of the Los Angeles Municipal Code.
Garcetti and other supporters of the law said its intention was not to punish homeless people, but to promote public safety and cleanliness.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti recently issued an ordinance that criminalizes homelessness in most areas of the city
“The homelessness crisis has reached epic proportions throughout the city of Los Angeles,” the ordinance said. “It is the City’s obligation to keep its public rights of way clean and available for public use, and to protect the public health, safety and access of City citizens. “
Mike Bonnin, one of two city council members who voted against the ordinance, said at the city council meeting last Wednesday: “There are a lot more people who want housing than we have. sufficient resources for.
He added that the city only has enough accommodation beds for 39% of the homeless population, but “what about the remaining 61%? Where can they go? Where can they sleep?
Ricci Sergienco, of the LA People’s City Council, also spoke out at the meeting against the ordinance. “It basically means” that the poor who just exist will be criminalized. ”
A statement the mayor’s office sent to The Independent describes the city’s attempt to strike a balance between public safety and the homeless crisis.
It reads: “We don’t need to choose between keeping our public spaces clean and safe and connecting homeless Angelenos with the housing and services they desperately need.
“We can and will do both, and I support the action of the council as it will help achieve this in a humane, compassionate way, and responsive to the urgent needs of our communities. “